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Angel on a Leash: Therapy Dogs and the Lives They Touch Paperback – Bargain Price, November 8, 2011

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Editorial Reviews


"Angel on a Leash will make you smile and cry and appreciate the great things that our dogs do for us and for people in need. My longtime friend David Frei has written a heartwarming book about his work with therapy dogs and the human-animal bond. So ready, put the book down, hug your dog, and repeat, again and yet again. I love it and so will you! You will want to reread this one." - Betty White

"Therapy dog work helps you and your dog teach one another and learn from one another. David Frei's Angel on a Leash is a terrific lesson in how that happens. David and his dogs love and trust each other, and this has enabled him to make it his life's work to share hope with people in need. It has also given him many wonderful stories to share with us in the heartwarming book. I couldn't put it down." - Cesar Millan, The Dog Whisperer

"When a dog wags his tail, is is connected to his heart. When David tells these stories of the dogs he has known and the good that they've done, they are connected to his." - John O'Hurley, from the foreword

About the Author

David Frei is well known to millions of television viewers as the longtime co-host (21 years) of the popular Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show.

In connection with that role, he has made many appearances on "The Today Show," "Good Morning America," "The Early Show," "Ellen," "The View," "Martha Stewart," "Charlie Rose" and more. He has been director of communications for the Westminster Kennel Club since 2003. David also has been co-host on NBC of "The National Dog Show" on Thanksgiving Day since its inception, a telecast seen by about 20 million viewers every year.

A longtime breeder-owner-handler and judge in the world of purebred dogs, he has enjoyed much competitive success with his Afghan Hounds and Brittanys. Ch. Stormhill's Who's Zoomin Who was the #1 Afghan in 1989 and retired as the top-winning female in the history of the breed. David has also exhibited his Brittanys in conformation and field trials. A Cavalier King Charles Spaniel puppy named Angel recently joined the family and is a newly certified therapy dog.

With Westminster, David helped to create Angel On A Leash, a charitable activity supporting therapy dog programs at health care facilities around the country. David is an active volunteer as well, visiting each week with his two Brittanys and his Cavalier at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center and the Ronald McDonald House of New York.

He is a member of the Sports Council of the St. Jude Children's Research Hospital and does volunteer work with Transfiguration Church and School in New York's Chinatown.

In 2009, the Dog Writers Association of America awarded him the American Kennel Club Distinguished Service Award, and in 2010, the World Dog Press selected him for their Media Award.

David is the co-author, with Mike Lingenfelter, of The "Angel By My Side", a critically-acclaimed best seller about a heroic service dog, published in 2002 ( And in 2004, he appeared in one of the final episodes of the HBO hit series, Sex And The City, playing a dog show judge.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 208 pages
  • Publisher: BowTie Press; 1 edition (November 8, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 193548463X
  • ASIN: B00F6KQ91I
  • Product Dimensions: 7.9 x 5.2 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.1 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,999,511 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

26 of 26 people found the following review helpful By Michelle Dunn on October 28, 2011
Format: Paperback
Angel On A Leash, David Frei's compelling new book about therapy dogs, is about real people, often children with cancer. whose lives, and sometimes deaths, are enriched and eased by the presence of a therapy dog: an Angel On A Leash.

The reader will learn just what a Therapy Dog does and how this differs from the work of a Service Dog. The differences are significant and often confused. We are grateful for the clarification, and learn that while Therapy Dogs often work with people in hospitals, and at places like Ronald McDonald House, providing special warmth, joy and comfort to patients, Service Dogs are trained to help the individual who is their owner, devoting their lives to one single person.

Each chapter has its own special personality, featuring different dogs in different situations where an Angel is needed. You will find yourself laughing and then crying, and reading the same chapter over again, just to make certain that you got it all.

As the owner of two therapy dogs, Butter and Serafina, whose lives are themselves enriched through service to others, I especially appreciated the effort that Mr. Frei makes in educating the reader about how and where to get one's dogs trained and properly certified. Such knowledge is now, through this book, easily found by dog owners who otherwise might not pursue the training. Perhaps more will. And that's all to the good, because there is great need for it, and them; the Angels who perhaps follow angels, all the way through.

Michelle Ascher Dunn LMSW
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Gary Walker on October 27, 2011
Format: Paperback
I just read "Angel On A Leash" by David Frei. My nephew, who is a dog show judge and friend of David Frei sent it to me as I have a two-year-old Cavalier (Charlie) who is a therapy dog. The book gave me a new insight as to how important Animal Assisted Therapy work is. And, it gave me a new sense of pride.

This book is touching, funny, and educational.

Thank you.

Suzy Kahn Walker
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Avid Reader on November 1, 2011
Format: Paperback
First, full disclosure: I know the author and his first chapter involves my black lab and me. Having said that, the truth is that this is a really great read. It's educational without being pedantic and emotionally satisfying without being cloying. You don't need to be a dog lover to enjoy this book, just like you don't need to be a serial killer to enjoy murder mysteries. The author deals with human issues that are made that much more poignant when seen through the "eyes" of the therapy and service dogs that punctuate his book. If you weep at Hallmark commercials (even when you think nobody is looking), this is the book for you. In a world filled with so much confusion and angst, it's nice to be reminded that some of the answers lie in the non-judgmental efforts of therapy dogs who apparently want nothing more than to be of assistance to those in need. You will laugh and cry, I promise.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By William A. Wynne on November 21, 2011
Format: Paperback
" ANGEL ON A LEASH,Therapy Dogs and the Lives They Touch" is the bible in guiding you and your dog,if you wish to do therapy in hospitals, rest homes and with children. If you are already doing therapy you will treasure this book as it is about you too. David Frei is the most recognized dog authority in the U.S. and probably World Wide as national TV narrator of the WESTMISTER KENNEL CLUB, Dog Shows and The NATIONAL Dog Shows. In a simple way this is David's Frei's song of love. It goes beyond the show ring taking you on his daily walks exposing his prize dog companions to new friends. Everyday people on the sidewalks of New York are often astounded in meeting the latest BEST IN SHOW WINNER of the WESTMINSTER KENNEL CLUB, right on the spot! David takes those highly esteemed stars and shares them with everyone. The most humble to high society. David has given these magnificent Kings of the Ring a life beyond the greatest Dog Show on earth. He also brings his personal pets, certified for therapy. They must be certified in today's world. This is so important. He warns of where you have your dogs certified,as Dogs now sharing a closeness beyond belief with those in pain, and possible despair, now giving new hope and consolation have to be trusted with everyone. That is what therapy dogs do. There must be 10,000 dogs visiting those in need of a gentle furry companionship if only for a little while. But 10,000 aren't enough. For some it is absolutely exhiliating, You feel the joy. For others it may be the last time. OH, what can be more important? Dog lovers will enjoy this book because of the mutual understanding of descriptions he shares. I say these things not because David Frei mentions my dog Smoky and me in Chapter 16,of which I am so very honored, but because he is encouraging a National humaniterian movement of goodwill. What can be more important for common people than to share their beloved dogs with those in dire need.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Pamela Barrett VINE VOICE on December 9, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Funny, quirky, informative: Caution, get out the tissues these stories may bring a few tears to your eyes.

If you're like me and love to watch the Westminster Dog Show and National Dog Show every year, then you have to get a copy of this book by David Frei, the 2 shows MC. The stories he shares of therapy dogs visiting children with cancer, seniors and soldiers in rehabilitation centers are journeys of the heart. In between the stories he explains the difference between therapy dogs, which David and his wife have, and the service dogs that we've seen working with the blind and disabled. He also touches on the history of therapy dogs and what it takes for a dog to do that type of work; pointing out what it takes for the dog's handler to participate. This would make a great gift book for your dog loving friends.
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